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Fury as pony is led onto icy canal and left to drown

There is outrage in West Dublin after a pony was forced onto a frozen canal, before the animal crashed through the ice and drowned.

The horrific sight of the dead, frozen horse has angered residents in Clondalkin who claim they saw youths taking a number of ponies onto the Grand Canal during the big freeze.

The youths brought their horses onto the ice by the Nangor Road, just under the M50 flyover at Parkwest.

In the middle of the canal, the ice gave way and the horse plunged in.

And according to the DSPCA, this pony will be one of just 1,000 horses it expects will die this winter.

"There are 100 abandoned in Dunsink alone, and then there are more in Kylemore, Clondalkin, River Road, all over the place. Six died last week," said Orla Aungier.


"This is a huge worry. A starving dog will bark if it is in distress, but a horse will just stand there and die. It is heartbreaking. And the bad weather has just made things worse. These horses have no food, no shelter, and nobody to look after them.

"Letting a horse onto an icy canal is pure stupidity, but to be honest hearing about this poor animal doesn't surprise me. There was one found dead in the canal at Blackhorse before Christmas. We are at crisis point."

Local Labour councillor Robert Dowds said: "It is foolishness in the extreme. I am very saddened by this. The poor animal must have had an awful end."

Fine Gael Councillor Therese Ridge said: "It's an absolute disgrace. We had a big round-up of horses that were owned by people who do not have the skill or knowledge to care for them some years ago, and it looks like we will have to try and do it again."